Apogee to Invest $30M in MN or GA Plant

The company is comparing the cost and benefits of each location and pursuing state and local support for both locations.

Bloomington-based Apogee Enterprises, Inc., the parent company of glass manufacturer Viracon, announced Tuesday that it plans to invest $30 million in one of two Viracon plants—and its Owatonna plant is in the running.
 
The company is also considering Viracon’s plant in Statesboro, Georgia. The two plants are Viracon’s largest, Apogee said.
 
“Apogee is pursuing state and local support for both locations,” and is comparing the cost and benefits of each location, the company said.
 
The investment will result in an 18-month project that will “improve efficiencies and allow Viracon to offer the new products required to strengthen its competitive position,” Apogee said.
 
Apogee did not say when it will make a decision or whether the investment will create new jobs; calls to the company were not immediately returned.
 
Viracon employs about 2,000 people in the United States, and more than 1,000 work at the plant in Owatonna.
 
Viracon’s glass has been used in such buildings as the recently-rebuilt World Trade Center and the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, which is among the tallest buildings in the world. Local structures adorning Viracon-made glass include the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul and the University of Minnesota’s TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.
 
Apogee is among Minnesota’s 40-largest companies based on revenue. The company’s stock price more than doubled between November 2011 and November 2012, thanks to a steady increase in revenue, which totaled $662.5 million for the fiscal year that ended in March—up about 13 percent from $582.8 million during the previous year.